Sometimes you have to struggle…

Sometimes you have to struggle…

There is no Easter without Good Friday.  I read this last night…a blog I follow by a guy named Chet Scott who runs a coaching firm, Built to Lead, in Columbus.  He was talking about prayer and the fact that we typically pray for circumstances to change.  Chet cautions about this – he says that we are in “much deeper need of change” as individuals, not necessarily our circumstances.  The idea – that our struggles are many times a prerequisite to get us to where we want to go.

So, what are you struggling with?

Our pastor talked about the term Paradigm Shift yesterday and how it came into play.  By the way, if you’re wondering what a Paradigm Shift is – here’s the definition – a fundamental change in approach or underlying assumptions.  It’s essentially a complete change in how we look at something.

Back to the struggle.  What if you could change your perspective from looking at your struggle as something that’s holding you back?  What if you could look at your struggle as an opportunity?  I’ve heard people say – use your Adversity to your Advantage.  Pretty solid advice, I believe.

Profound wisdom comes from some odd places and I never knew much about the Comedian Steve Harvey.  Yes, that Steve Harvey who recently botched the Miss America Pageant winner.  Steve’s a guy who struggled with a lot of things in life but he gives a great perspective in this talk about the power of adversity in your life.  Harvey talks about how a seed grows.  He said a seed goes into the ground and doesn’t grow right away.  No, a seed needs a bunch of dirt to be piled on top of it and around it.  At first, nothing happens, the seeds is just surrounded by dirt.  Eventually, though, the rains come and that dirt starts to turn into “soil” and begins to nourish that seed.  Over time, with continued watering and nourishment, that seed will eventually grow and come up out of the ground. Pretty soon, you’ll have a full fledged tree (or whatever seed was planted).  If you want to watch it – here’s the link (it’s about 30 minutes or so).  Harvey’s got a shorter video (about 5 mins) about taking a leap of faith and “jumping”, which talks a lot about the same principles.  Here it is – Jump.

Bottom line, most of the time there is no “success” (whatever that is for you), without some sort of struggle.

It’s almost been a year since one of my best buddies, TJ, passed away.  He was buried last year on Good Friday.  He used to talk about Jesus all the time and it used to make me uncomfortable when we were younger.  Over time, and with a lot of dirt, I began to listen more intently and soak in more of what he was saying.  We lost him too soon, but he left a great legacy….planted some great seeds in many people.  In the last year, I decided to venture in…to really learn about what being a Christian means.

I’ve found that the struggle is often times just the thing we need to move us closer to the promised land.

So, I’ll ask again….what are you struggling with?  Maybe your paradigm shift could be looking at this in a whole new light.

James 1:2-4  “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”

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